insurance

Vacation security to avoid home insurance claim

Don't leave a burglar-friendly yard
Don't leave a burglar-friendly yard © Alexander Chaikin/Shutterstock.com

Most homeowners know that well-trimmed hedges and bushes deny burglars a key place to hide before breaking in. But it's also important for home security to prune low-hanging tree branches, which can give thieves access to the second floor.

If you'll be gone for a long period, make sure someone mows the lawn regularly or shovels promptly after snowstorms. An untended yard is a sure giveaway that no one is home.

Good exterior lighting also can keep thieves at bay. Some lights can be programmed to turn on at dusk and off at dawn, while others have motion sensors, so they'll turn on when someone walks by them.

Lighting should be focused on the entry ways into your home, Boykins says.

"Lights make burglars nervous," she says.

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